Fleas are microscopic insects that tend to live in warm places – such as in your pet’s fur, grass in the warmer months, and even in your soft furnishings at home – and survive by feeding on blood. When they bite they can leave itchy, red and raised bumps on the skin which can be painful.
An infestation of fleas on your pet can have health consequences for you and your family as they can carry nasty diseases. They reproduce at an almost uncontrollable rate so it’s very difficult to eliminate them once they have taken hold, and they’re also famed for their ability to jump great distances, which means they can spread very far, very quickly.
The best way to ensure you never have to deal with a flea problem – on your pet or in your house – is to regularly apply a flea treatment to your furry friend. These are available in a variety of forms, including ‘spot on’ treatments, sprays and tablets, and our vets and nurses will be able to advise you on which is best for your pet. We’ll even send you reminders when their next dose is due, so you never have to run the risk of letting the fleas take hold!
Unlike fleas, worms typically live inside the body and feed on nutrients in your pet’s intestines. They don’t spread quite as quickly or easily as fleas, but can still cause your companion to become very ill if they go undetected for too long.
The most common types of worm to affect pets in the UK are roundworm, tapeworm and lungworm. Symptoms of a worm infestation can be fairly distinctive and often include some or all of the following:
- Change in appetite
- Development of a ‘pot belly’ appearance (in puppies and kittens)
- Weight loss (this may be in spite of a normal appetite)
- The appearance of visible wriggling flecks in your pet’s faeces – these are the worms!
It is recommended that all pets are wormed regularly to prevent the likelihood of an infestation taking place and causing a problem. Toxocariasis is a zoonotic illness of humans caused by larvae (immature worms) of either the dog roundworm (Toxocara canis), the cat roundworm (Toxocara cati), this especially is a threat to children. There are several types of wormer to choose from, so it is best to discuss your pet’s situation and lifestyle with one of our friendly and experienced team who will be able to help you further.